Switch between Presentation and Normal Mode

Normal mode is the where we do all the editing. Sometime, we may need to come out of the presentation mode, quickly update it and jump back to the presentation mode.

Start presentation from current slide

Shift + F5 - If you are in editing mode (Normal Mode), you can start presenting right from that slide by pressing Shift and F5 key together. You may need to switch between the modes during preparation of the slides or to make some adjustment while presenting

Start presentation from beginning

F5 - Irrespective of what slide you are currently in, pressing F5 will start the presentation from the beginning

Exit presentation mode

Esc - Anytime during presentation, pressing Esc key will stop presentation and take you to the Normal mode. It will show the slide that you were just before Esc. If you are using previous versions of PowerPoint, please try hyphen ( - )

Moving between slides while presenting

While presenting the slides, sometime, we need to jump around slides instead of sequences. This section covers most of the keyboard shortcuts used in navigation in slide show mode

Go to the First Slide

Home - While presenting, if you need to start-over, pressing Home Button takes you to the very first slide

Go to the last Slide

End - pressing End button anytime during the presentation, takes you to the last slide of the PowerPoint, while in presentation mode

Go to a specific Slide

Type the number and Press Enter - Sometimes you need to navigate to backup slides or appendixes. If you remember the slide number, you just need to type that number and press enter. You will not see the numbers on screen, while you type. But the trick will happen when you press enter. To come back to the current slide, you need to type the current slide number and press Enter or you can use Ctrl +S to see "Last Slide Viewed" as mentioned in View All Slides Dialog showing list of titles

View All Slides Dialog showing list of titles

Ctrl + S - While in presentation mode if you want to jump forward or backward and do not know the slide number then simply press Ctrl and S. This will show a list of slides that you can choose from. Alternatively, you can select a slide and click on Go To. Remembering this shortcut will save you in difficult times, when you forget any other shortcuts.


Show Context Menu to choose Action from

Shift+F10 - All actions on slides can be done using mouse after you see the context menu using this keyboard shortcut. This one is my favorite keyboard shortcut. When you forget all the shortcuts, remembering this one will stop you from failing. Though the pop-up on the screen might feel little less intuitive. But, it helps you to get back to your previous slide, start annotating on screen or make it blank



Annotations and pointers (arrow, Pen or Laser)

Pointers play an important role in presentation to glue audiences to the section of the slide where you need their attention. There various option to suit your need. You can also hide any pointers

Hide Pointers

Ctrl + H - This will hide pointer from the slide show. To bring back pointer you can use Ctrl + A or any of the keyboard shortcuts mentioned in the following sections

Laser pointer

Ctrl + L - Pressing Ctrl and L change the pointer to Laser.


This is how it looks.

This tiny little Laser is the right pointer to draw attention of the audiences to particular part of screen

💡 Remember L for Laser

Change pointer to Arrow

Ctrl + A - Arrow is the default pointer. Anytime, you want to change it back to Arrow use Ctrl + A

💡 Remember A for Arrow

Change pointer to Pen for annotation or freehand

Ctrl + P - This change the pointer to Pen with default color. You can start annotating or write on top of the presentation. When you stop presenting, you will get a popup on whether you want to save your scribble in the PPT. It saves the annotation as image objects and can be adjusted or deleted afterwards

💡 Remember P for Pen


If you want to change pen color one option is to hover your mouse at the bottom left corner of the screen and you will notice very light panel floating. Click on the pen sign and it will pop-up the color panel. You can change color from there.

Sometimes, you might prefer a blank screen to draw or illustrate, rather than on the present slide. You can make your screen blank

You may Jump to the section for Black or white for annotation

Hide annotation Markup

Ctrl +M - This keyboard shortcut simply hide the the annotation that you have made. but do not delete those. anytime during presentation you can un-hide them again by pressing same Ctrl + M for the same slide

Change pointer to annotation eraser

Ctrl + E - Pressing this keyboard shortcut sequences changes the pointer to Eraser. Please note that the eraser erases annotation when you press on top of the annotation one at a time.

💡 Remember E for Eraser

Delete or clear all on-screen annotation

E - Pressing E erases all annotations. This is irreversible. You cannot get back the annotation that you have erased

💡 Remember E for Erasing

Making screen Blank for Annotation

Sometimes, during presentation, you might need audience's attention and do not want them to look at the screen or you want to do annotation on a white or Black board. you can blank your screen

Display a blank black slide and back

B - Pressing B in presentation mode makes the screen Black.

. or Period can be used to get back your slide on screen

💡 B for Black slide

Display a blank White slide and back

W - Pressing W in presentation mode makes the screen Black.

, or comma can be used to return to the presentation from a blank white slide.

💡 W for White slide

Summary of Curated list of PowerPoint Keyboard shortcuts for presentation

Curated list of PowerPoint Keyboard shortcuts.png